Joe Biden was the only world leader seen donning a mask during Russian president Vladimir Putin’s speech at the virtual climate summit Friday morning. The Biden White House hosted a 2-day summit with 40 world leaders Thursday and Friday to urge them to strengthen their climate ambitions.
All of the other world leaders participating in the event—including Russian president Vladimir Putin, German chancellor Angela Merkel, Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, and EU leaders Ursula von der Leyen and Charles Michel—were maskless, as viruses can’t be transmitted through computer screens.
Pres. Biden masks up for a video call to discuss climate change with world leaders
He appears to be the only one wearing a mask pic.twitter.com/TGGuM7BW0x
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) April 23, 2021
The screenshot of Biden being the only world leader wearing a mask comes from a Ruptly video feed of Putin’s speech on Friday.
Image of Biden as only world leader wearing a mask during virtual climate summit is via Ruptly video feed of Putin’s speech.
Other world leaders wore masks at different times of the summit
— Charlie Spiering (@charliespiering) April 23, 2021
Biden wore two masks when he met with the Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga at the White House last Friday.
Biden was not wearing a mask when he kicked off the climate summit on Thursday, talking about his proposed “huge investment in American infrastructure and innovation.”
“I’d like to build, I want to build a—critical infrastructure to deploy clean technology,” he said from a podium at the White House. “Both those we can harvest today, and those that will invent tomorrow.”
Biden said he has talked to “the experts” about providing “a more prosperous and more equitable future,” and that the signs of global warming “are unmistakable and the science undeniable.”
He added that the “United States isn’t waiting. We are resolving to take action.”
He spoke at great length about the “millions of good-paying middle class union jobs” that would be created in his infrastructure plan.
I see line workers laying thousands of miles of transmission lines for clean, modern resilient grid. I see workers capping hundreds of thousands of abandoned oil and gas wells that need to be cleaned up and abandoned coal mines that need to be reclaimed, putting a stop to the methane leaks and protecting the health of our communities. I see auto workers creating the next generation of electric vehicles, and electricians installing nationwide for 500,000 charging stations along our highways. I see the engineers and construction workers building new carbon capture and green hydrogen plants to forge cleaner steel and cement and produce clean power. I see farmers deploying cutting edge tools to make soil of our heartland, the next frontier of carbon innovation.
Biden said that by making these changes, the United States would be able to cut US emissions in half by 2030.
As ambitious as the administration’s infrastructure plans are, climate activists from a radical environmental group were not impressed. Activists from Extinction Rebellion called “bullshit” on Biden’s plans, dumping cow manure in front of the White House in protest.
“Time is running out!”
— Mediaite (@Mediaite) April 22, 2021